In the last three weeks of April this year, when the country was in the grip of the second wave of Covid-19 infections, average data consumption soared between 19.9% and 22.7% compared with the preceding months. This can be attributed to people being confined to their homes due to lockdowns. But unlike last year, the mobile users did not witness the deterioration of data speeds as mobile operators had prepared their networks to take the increased load.
As per mobile analytics firm Opensignal, in 2020, mobile users had witnessed up to 24.8% decline in their average download speeds during the six weeks between the last weeks of March 2020 and May 2020 as data consumption soared between 26.8% to 30% when the country was under strict lockdown.
“However, this time, we saw little change in the average download speed experience, showing that mobile operators successfully prepared their networks to cope with the increased data demand by their users due to the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic,” OpenSignal said.
Opensignal measured its smartphone users’ weekly average mobile data consumption and download speed experience from the week starting on December 30, 2019, to the week ending on May 2, 2021.
In India, smartphone users, on average, consumed a similar amount of mobile data throughout the initial weeks of 2020, and their mobile speeds did not change significantly. However, as the Indian government introduced strict lockdown measures in March 2020, OpenSignal observed a sharp increase in the average mobile data consumed by our smartphone users weekly — 26.8% to 30.1% higher than at the beginning of 2020.
The increased mobile data consumption lasted for six weeks between the last weeks of March 2020 and May 2020, before it gradually decreased towards pre-lockdown levels. Concurrently, users saw significant declines in their average download speeds — up to 24.8%, compared to the first week of 2020.